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Friday: Further Thought ~ From the Stormy Sea to the Clouds of Heaven — 9 Comments

  1. Irrespective of how we expect the end-time events to play out, we have a situation today in western secular countries, where the Roman Catholic church has lost any respect it has had in the past. In Australia, they have jailed Cardinal Pell, who was the third most senior Catholic in the world, serving as head of finances in the Vatican. The Royal Commission has exposed a long history of sexual abuse by priests and teaching brothers in schools and institutions run by the church. And worse, a culture of covering it up to protect the name of the church. The effect of this has been devastating, particularly on those members who regularly attend church. They are hurting badly as the crisis continues. If you want confirmation, start reading some of the Catholic blogs. My reading tells me that the same is true for not just Australia either.

    It is time to make friends with Roman Catholic Christians, not to tell them they are wrong, but to offer them the love of Jesus. We Australians have a saying, "You don't beat a sick dog to make it better!" I have heard some Seventh-day Adventists say that now is the time to preach the full Gospel; meaning that we should be out there condemning the Papacy. We do not need to do that; the media is doing that every day. But Roman Catholic Christians need to know that Protestant Christians look past the sins of the Papacy and still love them.

    Need I say it again?

    By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. John 13:35

    There is gospel work for us to do right now.

    Amen!(40)
    • Maurice, I don’t understand why you feel that sharing the full gospel would be condemning the papacy. Speaking the truth is just that, speaking the truth. The truth does not require that you prove someone wrong, it only requires that the truth be spoken, it will stand on its own.

      Amen!(3)
      • It is the difference between knowledge and wisdom, Karen. In the current climate I often hear words that amount to "I told you so!" in Adventist/Protestant circles. And when you think about it, that comes across as a very arrogant attitude. My response to those who make such statements is, "How many Catholic friends do you have? What do you say to them?" We need to understand the hurt they feel after being let down by the church and the best way to do that is to share the love of Jesus, rather than pointing out the wrongs of the papacy. The secular media is relentlessly doing that already.

        Jesus offered compassion before condemnation when dealing with those who had been hurt by "the church".

        Amen!(6)
  2. Some could be sincerely wrong. Some good people might be standing on the wrong side right now. In the same way, some wolves may be disguised in the middle of the sheep. The truth exists, but for some it seems not to be in the surface. Thank God He sees the heart, because prophetically there will be a time when the name of the church will matter no more. God will gather His children from all the world, regardless of the code they say to belong. God's people will once again rise, to finish this work and their hearts will be cleansed in the blood of Jesus. I want to belong to this invisible end-time group! A group that because of their character will stand up for what is right, because they naturally spot error!

    Amen!(17)
  3. I have a question about today's discussion question.

    Could believing that the little horn power applies only to a power that "alone arose out of pagan Rome many centuries ago and, besides having persecuted God’s people, remains in existence today" risk blinding me to manifestations of the character and nature of the little horn power in my own heart?

    Amen!(4)
  4. If you have read the quote from Prophets and Kings in today's lesson, what did your mind visualise? Satan as the prosecutor accusing and Jesus as the defense attorney pleading to the Father who occupies the role of a judge?

    If so, look more closely. Jesus is directly "vanquishing" Satan's accusations and says to Satan: "The Lord rebuke you". But doesn't it say Jesus claims mercy and reconciliation from His Father? If you read 2 Corinthians 5:19, you will see that God has already given Jesus His mercy and reconciliation. Thus, what the quote is picturing is Jesus, acting on full authority (authoritative not authoritarian) of the Father to provide abundant mercy and reconciliation (as per, for example, John 3:16,17), vanquishing Satan's accusations as baseless for those whose hearts have been reborn/renewed (as per John 3:3-6).

    If God is for us (which He is), who can be against us? Certainly not God - and not even Satan! It is only us who can ultimately be against us via our choice to harden our heart against the Holy Spirit's initiatives to save us (as per what happened at the flood: Genesis 6:3,5. See also John 1:11; 3:19).

    The view of God as the stern judge that we must one day face, though common, is not Truth. Rather, it is a product of Satan's relentless misportrayal campaign...

    "From the beginning it has been Satan’s studied plan to cause men to forget God, that he might secure them to himself. Hence he has sought to misrepresent the character of God, to lead men to cherish a false conception of Him. The Creator has been presented to their minds as clothed with the attributes of the prince of evil himself,—as arbitrary, severe, and unforgiving,—that He might be feared, shunned, and even hated by men. Satan hoped to so confuse the minds of those whom he had deceived that they would put God out of their knowledge. Then he would obliterate the divine image in man and impress his own likeness upon the soul; he would imbue men with his own spirit and make them captives according to his will." (5 Testimonies 738.1)

    Amen!(8)
  5. The Horn had eyes of a man, but it is a horn of a beast. The eye is the lamp of the body (Matt 6:22,23; Lk 11:34-36). This power’s dominion was distinct from the beast’s dominion. Which nation/power of all the nations was designated a ‘light’ to the world and given stewardship over His kingdom? This horn’s dominion was taken over by Christ according to Daniel. Was the Papacy given dominion over anything by God? Am I misunderstanding something?

    Amen!(1)
  6. The power of the Holy Spirit. But this power can only work for us if we want.

    Every day I am seeing more and more about this world. This world only has two set of people. Those standing with God and those against him. But even in this situation I don’t say who will be save and who will not. My Bible says not to be deceived, the wheat and tares will grow today, wolves in sheep clothing, also the parable about the sower and the seeds falling on four different soils.
    I have seen many Christians with good intentions until they fall. Christ must be our waking and sleeping, going out and coming in, in good times and bad times. Only those who endure to the end will be saved. We can’t wait for that time to occur, that time has to be now. Our anchor must be in Christ and Christ alone. In my own strength I am no match for Satan. It is Christ who will fight for me. State and church are getting closer and closer. The RC church might appear to be wounded now but will regroup so prophecy will be fulfilled.

    Amen!(6)

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